A child has the right to emotional and financial support from both parents. One parent should never have the financial burden alone to support the child. If both parents and the child do not live together, the court will order child support. There are many different scenarios that can make the process difficult, but with the help of a lawyer, you can make sure that child support is ordered and that what is ordered is fair and in accordance with the law.
At the Law Office of Amy Rimov, we know the law and how to handle these delicate types of cases. Whether you seek child support or want to challenge it or whether you are addressing child support through a divorce proceeding, our child support attorney will provide thorough advice and handle all aspects of the case while keeping you informed. To learn more about child support and your options regarding it and your unique situation, contact us online or at (509) 835-5377.
What is Child Support?
Child support is a way to ensure that both parents, although no longer in a relationship with one another, are financially responsible for their children while taking into consideration their ability to provide support. In most states and in most cases, child support lasts until children turn 18 years of age. There are exceptions made in cases where the child is still attending high school or is considered to be disabled. In Washington, child support can end when that child turns 18 or graduates from High School, whichever is the later of the two.
When one parent, or custodian, is seeking child support, they may do so by pursuing the matter pro-se through the court system, by hiring an attorney to represent them, or by seeking assistance from their local child support office.
Factors Considered when Determining Child Support
While each jurisdiction varies, there are certain factors most courts take into consideration when determining whether or not child support should be ordered, and if so, in what amount.
Some of the most common include:
- The gross income earned by each parent
- The number of children each parent is responsible for supporting
- How much time the children under the order spend with each parent
- Child care expenses
- The cost of health insurance for the child
- Whether or not the child suffers from any sort of disability that requires extra expenses
- Whether or not either parent is voluntarily unemployed or underemployed
The court will also consider any factors that it considers relevant and impact the parties' ability to pay child support.
Put My Experience to Work for You
If you believe you are paying too much support or receiving too little support, we can help. We can perform a guideline child support calculation to determine if you are paying more or receiving less child support than you are entitled to receive.
If you have grounds for a modification of child support, our attorneys can file a motion on your behalf, negotiate with your current or former spouse to reach an agreement, and argue for a child support modification on your behalf at court if an agreement cannot be reached.
Child Support Deviations
The specific facts of your case may warrant a deviation from the child support guidelines. In addition to calculating the amount you should owe or pay in accordance with the child support guidelines, our attorneys can help you determine if there may be a basis for a downward or upward deviation from support guidelines. If a deviation is appropriate, we can file a motion with the court to help you seek more support or pay less support.
Failure to Pay Child Support
When child support is established, a payment schedule is also established. When the parent ordered to pay support fails to do so, there are options available to the parent (or custodian) receiving the support. They are able to file a motion in the court to have the support order enforced, they may seek an attorney to help them, or they may seek the help of the local child support office (DCS).
In most jurisdictions, the parent under the order to pay will be able to explain to the court why they have not made their payments. The court will consider the matter and enter an order, which may include paying the other parents attorney fees.
In some cases, there are remedies available to ensure the child support is paid, such as wage withholding and tax refund withholding. Another remedy is the suspension of the driver's license of the person not making their payments as ordered.
Why Hire a Lawyer
If you are seeking child support establishment or enforcement, an attorney can help you locate the non-custodial parent and determine their ability to pay. If you are being ordered to pay child support, an attorney can help you ensure the amount of the order is fair. Child support orders are not set in stone and may be modified when the circumstances warrant a change.
Contact a Child Support Attorney
Child support is necessary to make sure your child receives the things they need to grow and thrive in life. One parent should not bear the financial burden. Our lawyers at the Law Office of Amy Rimov understand what is at stake and use skill, knowledge, and resources to represent your rights. We also handle other issues alongside child support, like child custody and spousal support. Contact us today by using our online form or calling us directly at (509) 835-5377 to schedule a consultation.